Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP)

For: 

The Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP) aims to ensure that Australians from low SES backgrounds who have the ability to study at university have the opportunity to do so. It provides funding to assist universities listed in Table A of the Higher Education Support Act 2003 to undertake activities and implement strategies that improve access to undergraduate courses for people from low SES backgrounds, as well as improving the retention and completion rates of those students.

HEPPP Evaluation

The Department has commissioned ACIL Allen Consulting, in partnership with Wallis Consulting, to evaluate the Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP).

The aim of the evaluation is to ensure that we are achieving the best outcomes for disadvantaged students. Government will be evaluating the HEPPP to determine:

  • the outcomes achieved by the program;
  • who has benefited from its activities;
  • whether the program provides good value for money; and
  • what changes may be required to increase higher-education participation and success by people from disadvantaged backgrounds into the future.

As part of the evaluation, ACIL Allen Consulting established a public submission process to allow organisations and individuals to provide their views on the HEPPP.

Stakeholders are invited to make a written submission to the evaluation by 11:59pm on 5 September 2016. Please see the ACIL Allen Consulting website. 

2016-17 Budget

In the 2016-17 Budget the Government announced that it would redirect $152 million in HEPPP funding to contribute to Budget repair and other priorities. Universities’ allocations for 2016 will not be affected. Total HEPPP funding for future years will be as follows:

2017

2018

2019

$140.3 million

$141.5 million

$143.0 million


The 2016-17 Budget also announced that the HEPPP will be evaluated in 2016.

The legislative authority for HEPPP is provided by the Higher Education Support Act 2003 and the HEPPP guidelines are contained in the Other Grants Guidelines (Education) 2012 .

HEPPP has three components:

  • Participation
  • Partnerships
  • National Priorities Pool

Participation Component

The Participation component of HEPPP provides funding to universities to increase the participation of domestic students from low SES backgrounds in accredited undergraduate qualifications, and support the retention and success of those students. Funding is allocated to universities by formula based on the number of students from low SES backgrounds enrolled at each university.

Participation funding allocated to each university is shown in the following spreadsheet:

Partnerships Component

The Partnerships component of HEPPP provides funding to universities to raise the aspirations and build the capacity of people from low SES backgrounds to participate in higher education, by developing activities in partnership with primary and secondary schools, VET providers, other universities, State and Territory governments, community groups and other stakeholders.

Since 2013 funding has been allocated to universities by formula based on the number of students from low SES backgrounds enrolled at each university. Previously most Partnerships funding was allocated through competitive grants rounds. Projects funded through this component can be found on the following pages:

National Priorities Pool

The National Priorities Pool component provides funding for projects that support the more effective implementation of HEPPP nationally and at the institutional level.

2016

2016 National Priorities Pool

$4.26 million of 2016 National Priorities Pool funding has been awarded to 23 projects from universities across Australia, for projects that aim to improve the policy basis and on the ground delivery of the HEPPP. These projects also focus on reducing barriers to higher education for students from low socio-economic status (SES) backgrounds from regional and remote Australia. 

2016

2015

2014

HEPPP Access and Participation Plans

Universities provide a three year Access and Participation Plan that outlines the institution’s suite of strategies for increasing access, participation and success by people from the following groups:

  • people from low socioeconomic backgrounds
  • people with disability
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • people from rural and remote areas
  • people from a non-English speaking background and
  • women in non-traditional areas of study

2015-2017 Access and Participation Plans

Further information

For further information, please contact the department at equity@education.gov.au